Email Jerry

I was fortunate enough to be raised in a family where music was as important as the 3 "R's". My Granddad played piano, guitar and was a very fine fiddler. My dad played piano, guitar and danced. At the age of seven I started piano and hated it! But I was given no selection. It was part of my schooling, just like homework. After a couple of years of what I considered torture, I finally figured a way out. My piano teacher would not tolerate a student playing by ear, so I made a concerted effort to do just that. After a while, she had a meeting with my Dad and expressed grave concern about my future as a pianist. The next week or so I was sitting on the front porch, strumming on my first guitar, grinning from ear to ear. Although I never mentioned it then, the piano lessons actually helped me learn the guitar. I was playing pretty well by the age of 13. My Granddad's place was within rock throwing distance of our house, so I spent a lot of time helping out with the farming chores. I started taking my guitar with me and he would get out his fiddle. As he would play the old tunes, I would second him on the guitar. He taught me to fiddle when I was about 14. I continued to visit and play with him until his death in 1961. He was 67 and I was 16. Granny gave me his fiddles and said he wanted me to have them and that he thought, someday, I would be a pretty good fiddler. I struggled with the fiddle till the mid 60's and finally laid it down and started playing blues, gospel and pop. There just wasn't anyone around that played the old-time tunes. About 10 or 12 years passed and I heard about a Bluegrass/Old time music festival at Horse Pens 40 in Steele, AL. It was there that I, once again, heard some of the old tunes I had heard as a kid. I also found that my cousin had made the same discovery. We both allowed that it was like the music our grandfather had played. My cousin, Jackie Burgess, is a well-known fiddler residing in Misenheimer, NC. In 1977 I started back playing the fiddle. I have kind of developed my own style flavored with the Blues and Gospel music I learned over the years. I now have three grown sons. All of them play at least two instruments. I live on the family farm in Eastaboga, AL. Hope you enjoy my Music ...Jerry Rogers